Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes said the district is reaching out to other communities to leverage more funding to improve daycare in the region. (Black Press file photo)

Saanich looks to leverage more funding for daycare analysis

Daycare spaces could also become part of amenity contributions, says Mayor Fred Haynes

Saanich may team up with additional communities in Greater Victoria to improve daycare for children.

The public heard last month that Saanich and Oak Bay plan to file a joint application to a grant program from the Union of British Columbia Municipalities (UBCM). If approved, each community would receive $25,000 to help identify local gaps in daycare service.

RELATED: Saanich, Oak Bay seek to expand supply of daycare

But officials have since heard more than just the two communities may in interested in filling joint applications to the UBCM grant program worth $3 million.

“So I am reaching out to some other municipalities to see if we can get more into the group,” said Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes. “If that is the case, we will have more funding available.”

The funding itself would not create more spaces, but rather identify existing gaps.

As for actual new spaces, the provincial government has made $13.7 million available to create approximately 1,370 more spaces, and the City of Victoria has already signalled it would apply for funding.

Haynes said Saanich is not interested in making such an application. “But we would be very much wanting to have conversations with those groups in Saanich that are doing that.” Potential groups would include SD61 and SD63, as well as non-profits such as the Saanich Neighbourhood Place.

RELATED: Long-time director of Saanich Neighbourhood Place leaves behind legacy

RELATED: Saanich forks out $253,000 for non-profit daycare

Haynes said the issue of affordable daycare appears high on the agenda of many including employers whose employees are struggling with finding daycare.

“We do have a housing crisis, but we also actually have a childcare crisis,” he said. “It is very difficult for families to have children, and there is no daycare,” he said.

To help solve this crisis, Saanich has also been talking to developers, who could create spaces through their amenity contributions, he said, adding that daycare spaces in residential developments also ease transportation pressures, since parents would not have to travel back and forth, if they can drop their off children in the same place where they live.

Ultimately, the provision of daycare is a question of affordability. Anything that helps families with daycare costs leaves more money for other areas of life, he said.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

wolfgang.depner@saanichnews.com

Just Posted

City of Victoria considers proposed senior rental development

The Mount St. Angela’s complex aims to include affordable rental units

Middle school students busted for vaping in Oak Bay

Oak Bay Police respond to minors vaping, arson, and transients sleeping in a car

Peninsula Panthers look to claw their way back into the win column

Panthers remain the best team in the league, but the Victoria Cougars are set to pounce

Last call for raffle ticket to win $6,900 necklace with 163 diamonds

Oak Bay contest funds patient care for people and families dealing with cancer

WATCH: Greater Victoria’s top stories of the day

A round-up of the day’s top stories

Second young woman dies after rollover crash near Williams Lake

‘Someone’s going to get her heart, which is awesome, because she has the best heart in the world’

Google searches for ‘how to vote’ surge on Election Day

Interest spikes despite social media campaign by Elections Canada

Union says Western Forest Products refuses to budge from ‘unreasonable concessions’

According to a press release, both parties met on Oct. 16, 18, 19, and 20.

Alberta man pleads guilty, fined for hunting without a licence in North Island

It’s the responsibility of each hunter or angler to know whether they are considered a B.C. Resident.

Alcohol a possible factor in crash that killed 17-year-old girl near Williams Lake

A pickup truck left the road and rolled over on Highway 20 on the weekend

B.C. woman must pay $1,000 after unleashed dog bites another

Owner should never have left Bibi unattended, tribunal member wrote

Climate activist Greta Thunberg’s mural defaced in Edmonton

The eyes on the portrait were blacked out

App designed to help cut waste and grocery bills

Food security advocates say addressing poverty is ultimate key

Most Read